Her Beautiful, Sleeping Man¹

Bernadette² met Jean-Pierre³ on an old Paris dance floor,
Their feet flitting the night away to the Bal-musette⁴.
She knew she'd love forever this man, like none before,
For from the first tremolo⁵, she knew her heart was set.

Then came 'the accident,' and Bernadette found she now
Must dance for two, as her love slipped into a silent sleep.
He, once so light upon his feet, as neither still knew how,
Needed hers to keep moving so their music would keep.

It mattered not that Jean-Pierre's life was that of an invalid,
Able to open his eyes, but not to see, or even conscious be.
Not sure if he could still hear, Bernadette talked as if he did,
Seeking to share a life she knew might only be for her to see.

The world told her to let go, to leave him as left for dead,
But not Bernadette, for as long as Jean-Pierre still breathed
She would be his wife, and would proceed without dread,
And live life loving with her all, her one and only betrothed. 

Thirty-nine years, she fed her Jean-Pierre five times a day,
Meals that took a toll all their own on her in their preparation.
She flexed his arms and legs so his muscles wouldn't go away,
No wires, no tubes, no machines, just a wife's determination.

Bernadette convinced herself he could smell her perfume
As his nose always twitched, straining to catch the scent,
That he knew full well whenever she entered his room,
That he even knew when his birthday flowers were present.

Thirty-nine years, with every day full of hope he'd awaken,
Bernadette lived life believing Jean-Pierre was still at hand,
Just in a different way than the day their vows were taken.
Letting go of the love of her life was never part of the plan.

Thirty-nine years, Bernadette and the Lord kept death at bay,
Until it was finally time to go, and his grave claimed its prize.
Still, she carries on, planting flowers, talking to him every day,
Her love for her beautiful, sleeping man, is forever in her eyes.

John 15:12-13, 3:16
Ephesians 5:25 (in reverse)
Mark 10:9
Galatians 5:13
I John 4:9-11

¹An Unbreakable Love: The Story of French Soccer Star Jean-Pierre
Adams in a 39-Year Coma, and the Wife Who Never Left His Side--
Wright Thompson, March 10, 2022

²Bernadette: brave as a bear

³Jean-Pierre: God is merciful

⁴Bal-musette: a style of French dance music, usually accompanied
 by an accordion

⁵Tremolo: a single note on an accordion with a trembling effect

by J Alan R
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